10 Items or Less (TV series)

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10 Items or Less
Created byNancy Hower
John Lehr
Robert Hickey
StarringJohn Lehr
Bob Clendenin
Jennifer Elise Cox
Greg Davis Jr.
Chris Payne Gilbert
Kirsten Gronfield
Christopher Liam Moore
Roberta Valderrama
ComposerSteven Argila
Country of originUnited States
Original languageEnglish
No. of seasons3
No. of episodes21 (list of episodes)
Executive producersNancy Hower
John Lehr
Robert Hickey
Camera setupSingle-camera
Running time20–22 minutes
Production companiesHowler Monkey Productions
Sony Pictures Television
Original networkTBS
Original releaseNovember 27, 2006 (2006-11-27) –
February 24, 2009 (2009-02-24)

10 Items or Less is an American comedy series created by Nancy Hower, Robert Hickey, and John Lehr. Partly scripted and partly improvised, the show starred Lehr as a less-than-successful businessman who returned home to run Greens & Grains, the family-owned supermarket, upon the death of his father.

The series debuted on TBS on November 27, 2006. During its first season, it aired Monday nights at 11 p.m. ET/PT. The second and third seasons aired on Tuesday nights at 11 p.m. ET/PT. In November 2009, a blog posting stated the show had been cancelled and would not be picked up for the fourth season.[1]

In 2015, the series was made available on Crackle.[2]


The series stars John Lehr as a failed New York City businessman who moves back to his hometown of Dayton, Ohio to take over the family supermarket following the death of his father. The show is set in the fictional supermarket known as Greens & Grains, located at 5th Street and Tiberius.[3]


  • Leslie Pool (John Lehr) – the owner and manager of Greens & Grains. Leslie brings his oblivious yet lovable management style to the Greens & Grains grocery store he inherits after his father's death.
  • Amy Anderson (Jennifer Elise Cox) – The first and second season manager of Super Value Mart, the G&G's number one competitor from across the street. Amy went to high school with Leslie.
  • Mercy P. Jones (Kim Coles) – The third season manager of Super Value Mart. She is ultra-competitive, and trying to put the G&G's out-of-business at all cost.
  • Ingrid Wakowski (Kirsten Gronfield) – Ingrid is the quirky, soft-spoken customer service representative who lives for Renaissance festivals.
  • Yolanda Nelson (Roberta Valderrama) – The straight talking dominant force behind the produce department.
  • Todd Sykes (Chris Payne Gilbert) – Todd, the butcher who hopes to be a NASCAR driver.
  • Carl Dawson (Bob Clendenin) – Carl is the sweet doofus stockboy with a huge crush on Yolanda.
  • Richard Mednick (Christopher Liam Moore) – Richard is a dignified cashier who dreams of becoming a professional figure skater.
  • Buchwald "Buck" Washington (Greg Davis Jr.) – Buck is a checkout bagger who is looking towards the future of becoming a doctor by attending night school.


A detailed script was written for each episode outlining the overall story arc. However, the script was not shown to the actors; instead they were provided with a loose outline of the plot, often finding out about it as they filmed. All dialogue in the show is improvised spontaneously by the actors on the set. A typical 22-minute episode was edited-down from roughly 30 hours of raw improvised dialogue and scenes.[4] John Lehr has described their production style as "similar to Spinal Tap." At one point during the first season the actors demanded to see the script, but upon receiving it they decided as a group that they did not want to see the scripts again in the future.[5]

The series is filmed in a real grocery store called "Jon's" in Reseda, California (formerly Vons),[6] often with actual customers used as extras.


Season 1 (2006)[edit]

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air dateProd.
11"The New Boss"Nancy HowerRobert Hickey, Nancy Hower & John Lehr27 November 2006 (2006-11-27)101
When Leslie's father passes away, he moves back to Ohio to run the family's business, the Greens & Grains supermarket. To Leslie's surprise, Amy Anderson, the manager of the competitor Super Value Mart, tries to close a deal she made with Leslie's dad to buy Greens & Grains from Leslie.
22"The Miracle Worker"Nancy HowerRobert Hickey, Nancy Hower & John Lehr4 December 2006 (2006-12-04)102
When he discovers a stain on one of the walls that resembles Jesus, Leslie markets the stain as a miracle to get more customers into the store. Meanwhile, Carl wants to see his son, Manuelito.
33"Health Insurance"Nancy HowerRobert Hickey, Nancy Hower & John Lehr11 December 2006 (2006-12-11)103
Leslie announces that Greens & Grains is having some financial difficulties and must eliminate health insurance all together or fire one employee.
44"What Women Want"Nancy HowerRobert Hickey, Nancy Hower & John Lehr18 December 2006 (2006-12-18)104
Leslie wants to join the Bisons, a high society social club, and plans on attending an event to make sure he gets in. But, because the Bisons are big on pairs, he first needs to find a date.
55"Bag It"Nancy HowerRobert Hickey, Nancy Hower & John Lehr25 December 2006 (2006-12-25)105
Greens & Grains agrees to go head to head in a bagging competition with Super Value Mart. Leslie however doesn't realize that Buck, the store's best bagger, has given up bagging competitions.

Season 2 (2008)[edit]

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air dateProd.
61"Dollar Day Afternoon"Nancy HowerRobert Hickey, Nancy Hower & John Lehr15 January 2008 (2008-01-15)203
Leslie comes up with a plan to bring in more customers through a "free money giveaway." Meanwhile, in a failed robbery attempt, the G&G crew is taken hostage in the store and Ingrid develops Stockholm syndrome. Eventually the robbers are thwarted, but only after Leslie is shot.
72"Forever Young"Nancy HowerRobert Hickey, Nancy Hower & John Lehr22 January 2008 (2008-01-22)205
Leslie is devastated to learn that Buck and Amy slept together after being drunk at a club one night. Convinced Amy would go for him if he were young like Buck, Leslie resolves to "hip" himself up and snags a make out sessions of his own with Amy.
83"To Heir Is Human"Nancy HowerRobert Hickey, Nancy Hower & John Lehr29 January 2008 (2008-01-29)201
As Leslie remembers his father Bud on the one year anniversary of his death, he realizes there is no one to continue the legacy of G&G. He decides to find an "heir" to take over when he dies.
94"First Time"Nancy HowerRobert Hickey, Nancy Hower & John Lehr5 February 2008 (2008-02-05)202
Ingrid decides that its time to lose her virginity and tries to find a suitor to help her.
105"The Bromance"Nancy HowerRobert Hickey, Nancy Hower & John Lehr12 February 2008 (2008-02-12)204
Todd wins some cows in a poker game and pitches Leslie the idea that they could use the cows to sell "the freshest meat in town".
116"Amy Strikes Back"Nancy HowerRobert Hickey, Nancy Hower & John Lehr19 February 2008 (2008-02-19)206
When Amy loses her job at the SuperValueMart, Leslie decides to hire her as Greens & Grains' new assistant manager, to the horror of the rest of the staff.
127"Illegal Alien"Nancy HowerRobert Hickey, Nancy Hower & John Lehr26 February 2008 (2008-02-26)207
After a calendar shoot, which Ingrid was chosen as cover model, Amy overhears that Ingrid is an illegal alien from Poland. When an attempt to have her arrested fails, Amy calls INS which eventually lands everyone in jail. Amy is the only one unable to make bail, and Leslie decides to sponsor Ingrid's citizenship.
138"The Ren Fair"Nancy HowerRobert Hickey, Nancy Hower & John Lehr4 March 2008 (2008-03-04)208
The Greens & Grains grocery store is celebrating Renaissance Days, wherein the staff dresses in 15th century garb.

Season 3 (2009)[edit]

No. in
TitleDirected byWritten byOriginal air dateProd.
141"Turkey Bowling"Nancy HowerNancy Hower & John Lehr6 January 2009 (2009-01-06)301
Todd and Carl create a new grocery store bowling game using frozen turkeys. Leslie becomes obsessed with the game. The new Super Value Mart store manager, Mercy P. Jones, bets Leslie he can't throw 3,000 frames without leaving a single pin standing and gambling fever takes over the store.
152"Eye Can See Clearly"Nancy HowerNancy Hower & John Lehr13 January 2009 (2009-01-13)304
Leslie's decision to start an eye exam clinic in Greens & Grains sets off a chain of events that results in Leslie going blind, which forces him to live with Yolanda.
163"Star Trok"Nancy HowerNancy Hower & John Lehr20 January 2009 (2009-01-20)303
Leslie holds a Star Trok convention. When Jolene Blalock of "Star Trek: Enterprise" shows up for her celebrity appearance, an exploding refrigerator compressor leaves her trapped in close quarters with Leslie and Ingrid.
174"One Day at a Time"Nancy HowerNancy Hower & John Lehr27 January 2009 (2009-01-27)306
Leslie is convinced to help Richard's mother overcome her alcohol problems when she is caught shoplifting liquor from the store.
185"The Whistler"Nancy HowerNancy Hower & John Lehr3 February 2009 (2009-02-03)305
After being humiliated by Super Value Mart, Leslie decides to put his whistling talent to good use and gets air play for his tunes.
196"The Milk Man"Nancy HowerNancy Hower & John Lehr10 February 2009 (2009-02-10)307
Leslie complains about getting too many expired milk jugs and runs up against the dreaded Dairy Consortium. Soon, Greens & Grains is completely depleted of dairy products, and it appears Leslie's life is in danger.
207"Dances with Groceries"Nancy HowerNancy Hower & John Lehr17 February 2009 (2009-02-17)308
Leslie discovers his great, great, great grandfather was a Native American and decides to make contact with the local Shawnee Indian tribe in an attempt to connect with his heritage.
218"Sesquicentennial"Nancy HowerNancy Hower & John Lehr24 February 2009 (2009-02-24)302
Leslie celebrates the store's 150th anniversary by doing everything the old-fashioned way; Ingrid dates a man who may not be what he appears to be.

Home media[edit]

Title Region 1
The Complete First and Second Seasons December 27, 2008
The Complete Third Season May 1, 2012


  1. ^ "TV Q&A with Rob Owen". Post-Gazette.com. November 13, 2009. Archived from the original on November 16, 2009. Retrieved November 18, 2009.
  2. ^ "Watch 10 Items Or Less Online Free - Crackle". Archived from the original on June 4, 2013.
  3. ^ "Greens & Grains Grocers – Directions". Archived from the original on January 12, 2008. Retrieved January 17, 2008.
  4. ^ "10 Items or Less on Quotes".
  5. ^ Chris Jalufka; John Lehr (December 19, 2012). "Interview: Making Television with Actor John Lehr". Evil Tender. Retrieved June 26, 2018.
  6. ^ "Grocery-store Comedy Premieres on TBS". Progressive Grocer. November 28, 2006.

External links[edit]